Sonos cutting support for older devices starting in May

Posted:
in General Discussion
Sonos is dropping support for certain devices starting in May, and is warning users that legacy devices in a mix will prevent newer devices from gaining crucial updates as well.

Sonos to cut support for older devices starting in May, urges customers to upgrade their systems


The announcement was made in a blog post, with the company attempting to explain why they're pulling support for the now-legacy devices.
We're extremely proud of the fact that we build products that last a long time, and that listeners continue to enjoy them. In fact, 92% of the products we've ever shipped are still in use today. That is unheard of in the world of consumer electronics. However, we've now come to a point where some of the oldest products have been stretched to their technical limits in terms of memory and processing power.
The legacy products losing support are the original Zone Players, Connect, and Connect:Amp (launched in 2006; includes versions sold until 2015), first-generation Play:5 (launched 2009), CR200 (launched 2009), and Bridge (launched 2007). The devices will no longer receive software updates or new features.

In addition to pulling support for the products, users who continue to use the Sonos legacy products in a sound system will not receive updates to their modern devices. This would likely stop improvements to features like AirPlay 2, Apple Music from reaching even the newer devices.

Unsurprisingly, outraged customers have taken to Twitter to air their grievances.

You have really not thought this through have you? People aren't going to pay again 6 years later for a whole new system with your pathetic discount. You will hemorrhage customers overnight and your reputation is down the pan. #sonos #ripoff



Feeling so disappointed that @Sonos has chosen to ignore their old and faithful customers by no longer providing software for their older products like the PLAY:5.

This is a bad move for #Sonos and I think it'll scare a lot of new potential customers away

-- Sren Granfeldt (@MrGranfeldt)


Anticipating the backlash, Sonos has offered customers two options for moving forward. The first is simply to keep using their legacy products. This will prevent modern devices from getting updates, which will likely stop them from functioning perfectly down the road.

The second option is to trade up to a new product. Sonos is offering a 30% credit for each legacy product a user recycles.

If a user chooses to participate, the products will enter "Recycle Mode," which deletes identifiable information and prepares them for recycling by locking them down completely after 30 days. Users will then need to take their products to a certified recycling facility. If no recycling facility is available, Sonos will pay the user to ship a product back to Sonos for recycling.

Whether or not a user is choosing to participate in recycling, Sonos suggests users check to see if their products are losing support by checking the System tab in a sonos.com account.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 36
    FatmanFatman Posts: 513member
    This is a good argument to buy the ‘old school’ way ... buy excellent quality ‘dumb’ speakers - that will last for decades - and wire them to the latest tech receiver. This way you update/replace one component instead of every speaker in your home.
    razorpitpscooter63dysamoriaGG1cincyteetokyojimubonobobbigjasewatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 36
    Not cool Sonos. 
    razorpitdysamoriaGG1agilealtitudeanantksundaramwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 36
    What a compelling reason not to buy Sonos.

    It's reasonable to keep a home sound system for 10 years. I'm sure many of you likely have seen people keep systems for far longer than this, but for the sake of the argument it's best to cap it here.

    I think this shines well on Apple's efforts to keep their devices relevant - the latest version of iOS is still supported on devices as old as the iPhone 6 (released about 4 years ago) despite the addition of significant features, and the bulk of consumers upgrading handsets between 1 and 3 years.
    razorpitpscooter63watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 36
    polymniapolymnia Posts: 1,054member
    What a compelling reason not to buy Sonos.

    It's reasonable to keep a home sound system for 10 years. I'm sure many of you likely have seen people keep systems for far longer than this, but for the sake of the argument it's best to cap it here.

    I think this shines well on Apple's efforts to keep their devices relevant - the latest version of iOS is still supported on devices as old as the iPhone 6 (released about 4 years ago) despite the addition of significant features, and the bulk of consumers upgrading handsets between 1 and 3 years.
    I’m sure you know that the rest of your A/V components receive limited updates as well. 

    For example, my high end Marantz SR7009 cannot pass through HDR signals, even though it can pass through 4K and decodes Atmos (added via firmware update, IIRC). I was bummed out since I’m thinking of upgrading my main TV to a 4K HDR setup and adding the Atmos-required overhead speakers. 

    The reality is that Sonos have supported their very first speakers & amps much longer than is typical for this type of device. It’s like calling Tom Brady a coward should be finally decide to retire from NFL football in his mid-40s. You’ve completely missed the point of what a remarkable career he’s had. To be clear, I’m no Tom Brady fan, but he makes a good case study. 

    I have both a Sonos Connect & Amp, so I’m affected by this support decision. Still, I’m excited for what Sonos can do by targeting a more capable hardware platform. I love the AirPlay 2 functionality in my newer devices. I’d love deeper intervention with the streaming services, both in the Sonos app as well as 3rd party apps. Hopefully ending support of the oldest, most limited hardware will let the new hardware shine. 
    gatorguy
  • Reply 5 of 36
    All my Sonos components are "legacy" ZonePlayers (the amplified and non-amplified versions).  They've worked perfectly over the MANY years I've had them and still continue to be 100% serviceable.  The only component that kicked the bucket years ago was the Sonos "brick" remote.  With the advent of the Sonos app, no need for that hefty remote.

    For me, I do basic streaming.  Nothing fancy.  No AirPlay.  My Sonos system will be useful (to me) for another 10 years assuming the parts still work!  

    I am thankful that they (Sonos) is still allowing my ZP's to work.  I could care less about updates as I prefer things to stop changing and just stay the same and work.  

    I'm not sure if that means that I cannot update the Sonos app anymore, or if they mean that future app updates won't update my ZP's, but the latter seems like it could be a problem.
  • Reply 6 of 36
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    Point one: AI still needs to learn to put third-party long form quotes in some kind of blockquote format, or at least put them in italics, bookended by quotation marks. This is basic formatting.

    Point two: what Sonos is doing here is exactly why I do not buy “smart” gadgets if there’s a non-computerized version of something I need. It will become obsolete LONG before it physically wears out. I feel the same way about buying music gear that relies on computers (looking at you, Roli, Native Instruments, and every other company selling devices that are marketed with major features that require computer or iOS software).

    Dumb electronics with physical connections only become obsolete when no one sells things that use their connectors. That takes a LOT longer (for something made using standard connectors). I will never buy Bluetooth speakers, earpieces, headphones, smart speakers, smart TVs, or any “internet of things” appliances.

    No relying on software updates (that stop short of making the product operate reliably and correctly, and which will eventually stop supporting whatever they’re supposed to be connected to).

    No services to be shut down when the seller decides it’s not profitable to maintain (making the devices and software relying on it entirely useless garbage).

    The computer industry is one of the most egregiously materials-wasteful and customer-abusive industries ever. So much of this nonsense shouldn’t even happen in a sane civilization. Regulation is a necessity here (especially as it’s also the industry with the most laissez-faire capitalism cultists in its user communities, constantly promoting anti-customer and anti-environmental attitudes and myths). The responsibility should be legally placed on the companies selling products (who are the most informed about them), not on the customers buying the products (who are subject to the limited info provided by, and usually the failed promises of, marketing). Putting the onus of responsibility on customers to “control what the market offers” is absolutely backwards.
    Gabyingenious
  • Reply 7 of 36
    hentaiboyhentaiboy Posts: 1,244member
    Not cool Sonos. 
    Sonos is dropping support for products released between 2006 and 2009.

    Apple no longer supports products released in 2014.

    Not cool Apple?
    ktappeviclauyyc
  • Reply 8 of 36
    larryalarrya Posts: 582member
    What a compelling reason not to buy Sonos.

    It's reasonable to keep a home sound system for 10 years. I'm sure many of you likely have seen people keep systems for far longer than this, but for the sake of the argument it's best to cap it here.

    I think this shines well on Apple's efforts to keep their devices relevant - the latest version of iOS is still supported on devices as old as the iPhone 6 (released about 4 years ago) despite the addition of significant features, and the bulk of consumers upgrading handsets between 1 and 3 years.
    One of the justifications for paying the prices Sonos demands was service and support.  But we have to keep being reminded that not all companies are Apple. 2015 was not that long ago for my $500 Play:5 and my $500 connect:amp. My 2011 iMac just lost support in 2019, but here’s $1,000 worth of products that are unsupported after nearly half that time.  And it’s not as though we can count on them continuing to work. They broke the wireless dock pretty quickly after its support ended a year after I bought it. 

    No, there will not be any new Sonos products in my future.  Too many other options for disposable speakers. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 36
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,272administrator
    dysamoria said:
    Point one: AI still needs to learn to put third-party long form quotes in some kind of blockquote format, or at least put them in italics, bookended by quotation marks. This is basic formatting.

    Point two: what Sonos is doing here is exactly why I do not buy “smart” gadgets if there’s a non-computerized version of something I need. It will become obsolete LONG before it physically wears out. I feel the same way about buying music gear that relies on computers (looking at you, Roli, Native Instruments, and every other company selling devices that are marketed with major features that require computer or iOS software).

    Dumb electronics with physical connections only become obsolete when no one sells things that use their connectors. That takes a LOT longer (for something made using standard connectors). I will never buy Bluetooth speakers, earpieces, headphones, smart speakers, smart TVs, or any “internet of things” appliances.

    No relying on software updates (that stop short of making the product operate reliably and correctly, and which will eventually stop supporting whatever they’re supposed to be connected to).

    No services to be shut down when the seller decides it’s not profitable to maintain (making the devices and software relying on it entirely useless garbage).

    The computer industry is one of the most egregiously materials-wasteful and customer-abusive industries ever. So much of this nonsense shouldn’t even happen in a sane civilization. Regulation is a necessity here (especially as it’s also the industry with the most laissez-faire capitalism cultists in its user communities, constantly promoting anti-customer and anti-environmental attitudes and myths). The responsibility should be legally placed on the companies selling products (who are the most informed about them), not on the customers buying the products (who are subject to the limited info provided by, and usually the failed promises of, marketing). Putting the onus of responsibility on customers to “control what the market offers” is absolutely backwards.
    Point one: the long quote is in a blockquote.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 36
    I wonder what kind of hell will be raised when Apple discontinues the homepod. 

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 36
    avon b7avon b7 Posts: 5,934member
    This is poor, whichever way you look it but having older devices impacting newer devices takes the biscuit.

    We are slowly moving towards having this kind of stuff covered by legislation, which could see manufacturers obliged to state - at purchase - the minimum time the the devices will receive support for the features named on the box.

    With software (in general) it's a miracle developers have been able to fix known bugs in paid upgrades and get away with it (along with removing features) but in industry terms this is still a young business and it always takes time for legislation to adapt to new realities.
  • Reply 12 of 36
    The crux is the actual meaning of "not supported." If that means it just doesn't get new software but continues to function as it currently does, I don't see it as a problem. If it means is ceases to function, a move far too many app makers make, then that's a problem.
    viclauyyc
  • Reply 13 of 36
    dysamoria said:
    Point one: AI still needs to learn to put third-party long form quotes in some kind of blockquote format, or at least put them in italics, bookended by quotation marks. This is basic formatting.

    Point two: what Sonos is doing here is exactly why I do not buy “smart” gadgets if there’s a non-computerized version of something I need. It will become obsolete LONG before it physically wears out. I feel the same way about buying music gear that relies on computers (looking at you, Roli, Native Instruments, and every other company selling devices that are marketed with major features that require computer or iOS software).

    Dumb electronics with physical connections only become obsolete when no one sells things that use their connectors. That takes a LOT longer (for something made using standard connectors). I will never buy Bluetooth speakers, earpieces, headphones, smart speakers, smart TVs, or any “internet of things” appliances.

    No relying on software updates (that stop short of making the product operate reliably and correctly, and which will eventually stop supporting whatever they’re supposed to be connected to).

    No services to be shut down when the seller decides it’s not profitable to maintain (making the devices and software relying on it entirely useless garbage).

    The computer industry is one of the most egregiously materials-wasteful and customer-abusive industries ever. So much of this nonsense shouldn’t even happen in a sane civilization. Regulation is a necessity here (especially as it’s also the industry with the most laissez-faire capitalism cultists in its user communities, constantly promoting anti-customer and anti-environmental attitudes and myths). The responsibility should be legally placed on the companies selling products (who are the most informed about them), not on the customers buying the products (who are subject to the limited info provided by, and usually the failed promises of, marketing). Putting the onus of responsibility on customers to “control what the market offers” is absolutely backwards.
    When I purchased my Sonos components a decade or more ago, there was nothing really smart about them.  They played a library of music that I kept on a PC and was controlled by a 2 lb remote controller.  It allowed me to play music in different zones around the house (or outside) at the same time or different music in each zone without physically wiring them together.

    The product has morphed into something that it wasn't back then.  I still use it like I did a decade ago, apart from streaming from internet services instead of my own physical library.  

    While I understand that products cannot be supported forever, I also cannot afford to just ditch all my gear and pony up for $650 boxes that would serve the same purpose to me just because the company doesn't want to support my old devices anymore.  I will milk my current setup as long as possible knowing that someday, the software apps (controllers) won't work anymore.  Then I go find something much cheaper.
    larrya
  • Reply 14 of 36
    ktappektappe Posts: 808member
    hentaiboy said:
    Not cool Sonos. 
    Sonos is dropping support for products released between 2006 and 2009.

    Apple no longer supports products released in 2014.

    Not cool Apple?
    Not exactly correct. I can (and have) install(ed) the latest macOS on my 2012 MacBook Air. True, they wouldn’t repair it if I took it into an Apple store, but they have not obsoleted the hardware if it’s still functioning.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 36
    Wow, people need to relax and dial it back a bit.

    "not supported" does not equal "will stop working".

    There are plenty of products, probably in most of our homes, that are no longer supported but continue to hum along just fine.  I have an old iPod that still plays music just as well as the day it was new (ok, admittedly, the battery leaves a bit to be desired).  My old AppleTV is also on the 'not supported' list, yet I'm still able to stream Netflix and Amazon Prime to my TV thru it without a hiccup.  I'm pretty sure my so-called "smart" TV's stopped receiving updates about a year after purchase.

    Your Sonos will continue to work, too, with the same spec as you bought it.  But, as a 'smart' device there will be things that it can no longer support. This should be expected.  AirPlay2 may require a different chipset, for example.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 36
    bbhbbh Posts: 122member
    dysamoria said:
    Point one: AI still needs to learn to put third-party long form quotes in some kind of blockquote format, or at least put them in italics, bookended by quotation marks. This is basic formatting.

    Point two: what Sonos is doing here is exactly why I do not buy “smart” gadgets if there’s a non-computerized version of something I need. It will become obsolete LONG before it physically wears out. I feel the same way about buying music gear that relies on computers (looking at you, Roli, Native Instruments, and every other company selling devices that are marketed with major features that require computer or iOS software).

    Dumb electronics with physical connections only become obsolete when no one sells things that use their connectors. That takes a LOT longer (for something made using standard connectors). I will never buy Bluetooth speakers, earpieces, headphones, smart speakers, smart TVs, or any “internet of things” appliances.

    No relying on software updates (that stop short of making the product operate reliably and correctly, and which will eventually stop supporting whatever they’re supposed to be connected to).

    No services to be shut down when the seller decides it’s not profitable to maintain (making the devices and software relying on it entirely useless garbage).

    The computer industry is one of the most egregiously materials-wasteful and customer-abusive industries ever. So much of this nonsense shouldn’t even happen in a sane civilization. Regulation is a necessity here (especially as it’s also the industry with the most laissez-faire capitalism cultists in its user communities, constantly promoting anti-customer and anti-environmental attitudes and myths). The responsibility should be legally placed on the companies selling products (who are the most informed about them), not on the customers buying the products (who are subject to the limited info provided by, and usually the failed promises of, marketing). Putting the onus of responsibility on customers to “control what the market offers” is absolutely backwards.
    Luddites forever !!!!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 36
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 11,689member
    hentaiboy said:
    Not cool Sonos. 
    Sonos is dropping support for products released between 2006 and 2009.

    Apple no longer supports products released in 2014.

    Not cool Apple?
    While I can’t speak to the specifics of the hardware constraints on these speakers, I can say it’s not in the same scope of personal computing devices, which are entirely processor dependent resulting in significantly more taxing requirements for modern functionality & added features...thus shorter useful lifespans compared to speakers, which have limited functionality. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 36
    I get that the older models will no longer receive updates as they don’t have the specs to deal with the latest new features (my Play:5 doesn’t support AirPlay 2 for instance) - fair enough.

    What I do object to is that if I keep my perfectly useable Play:5 in my Sonos system, then all my other, newer Sonos investments will be blocked from updates. That stinks. 

    Surely it’s feasible to provide a software solution to ring fence older kit?

    Come on Sonos - keep your customers loyal and likely to recommend your products to new customers rather than coercing them into an upgrade cycle that erodes that loyalty. New customers will benefit your bottom line far greater than reluctant upgrades from your existing customer base (that is likely to diminish with this sort of tactic).


    bonobobwatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 36
    Smart door locks...smart cameras...smart speakers...all susceptible to diminishing or discontinued support.  This, unfortunately, is the nature of smart devices.  As a prospective buyer, I suppose I should be considering the cost of upgrade / replacement of these items every few years.  I suppose we are used to this reality with respect to smart phones and computers.  But everything else...? Hmmm.  This will undoubtedly impact my purchasing decisions.

    I wonder what will happen when Apple decides to no longer 'support' the original $10K Apple Watch Edition... ;)
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 36
    SoliSoli Posts: 10,031member
    Smart door locks...smart cameras...smart speakers...all susceptible to diminishing or discontinued support.  This, unfortunately, is the nature of smart devices.  As a prospective buyer, I suppose I should be considering the cost of upgrade / replacement of these items every few years.  I suppose we are used to this reality with respect to smart phones and computers.  But everything else...? Hmmm.  This will undoubtedly impact my purchasing decisions.

    I wonder what will happen when Apple decides to no longer 'support' the original $10K Apple Watch Edition... ;)
    Hasn't it already been years since the Series 0 watches received watchOS updates?
    edited January 2020 bonobobStrangeDayswatto_cobra
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